"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." -Winston Churchill

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Every Woman Can Breastfeed! A rant.

I get so mad when I hear this statement. When a mom who has been supplementing due to lack of growth, lack of wet and poopy diapers asks for advice on increasing supply and everyone shouts "STOP SUPPLEMENTING!" I become enraged. It isn't as SIMPLE as that.
Do they have any idea how badly I'd LOVE not to supplement? Not have to drag bottles and formula around with me, everywhere I go. Just pull out a boob and feed my baby, leaving her satisfied?
Do they know I've tried every herb under the sun, I've pumped like a maniac, I've nursed on demand, I've ordered medications from Australia, for God's sake. And, I almost starved my baby. If I didn't supplement, my baby would be sick, sick, sick.
So, I'm tired of hearing "stop supplementing, your body will make up the difference" because sometimes it WON'T. And that makes me, a mom who's body just WON'T, feel like a huge pile of crap. Like it's something I'm doing or not doing that's keeping my body from doing what it should.
I've worked incredibly hard with 3 different babies, trying to breastfeed. And if it wasn't for supplementing, my babies wouldn't have survived.

So, to all those moms out there with your full milk supplies, maybe suggesting cutting down the supplements would be better than stopping cold turkey. Cut down little by little, and if baby is still doing well, still gaining, still peeing and pooping enough, cut down a little more. And maybe, maybe, you'll be able to stop supplementing altogether. But maybe not. And you shouldn't have to feel like a failure if you can't. Because sometimes, you really can't.


  1. I have made this statement to people who DON'T have a medical condition with their boobs... but to women who are the ones who had full milk supplies but don't want nurse in public, go out, drink, etc. So- unless people KNOW you have tried everything and you have an ACTUAL medical condition... they may just think you are one of the "lazy" bf'ing moms... the ones we get angry over :) In a lot of cases- it IS simple as- STOP SUPPLEMENTING!

    Don't let it get to you unless they know there is a medical condition or if there isn't one.

  2. You're right. But there was a mom on a facebook group who said she was working with an LC, supplementing because her baby wasn't gaining or having enough dirty diapers and she stated she was doing EVERYTHING and every other comment was "stop supplementing." It just made me SO mad... It's hard to get a diagnosis of IGT because hardly any doctors know about it. When I signed up for WIC, I told the nutritionist about all the problems I'd had, and that I would love to breastfeed, but would probably have to supplement, because I just don't make enough, and she told me that doesn't really happen. Because every woman can breastfeed. I didn't go back to get Lorelei signed up for WIC, I was so upset.

  3. Thank you, thank you, thank you...

    Now I'm off to eat a lactation cookie, chug a liter of water, power pump with my hospital-grade pump, drink a non-alcoholic beer, strip of my and my baby's clothes, take some Fenugreek and Goat's Rue, take a nap, set up my SNS system, mix up some formula and then wait for my black-market drugs to arrive from overseas.

    That would be pretty darn funny if it wasn't true.

  4. Jessica wow I have found a match!!! I know the post you are speaking of and I have nursed twins and a singleton who is now weaning at 15 months I am sure bc of my supply and I could no longer take the meds after a year. The comments on that post were making me so angry I wanted to jump through the computer. I did nurse my twins for a year and I did have to supplement but at the end of the day that got majority BM as well as my singleton and I would have loved not to have given any of my 3 formula. I mean seriously I have tasted the difference and smelled the difference don't these women think we would choose the better. It is hard for me to say because I am so Pro Breastfeeding (in process of becoming LC) but at the end of the day it is a Choice and some women do not choose it (makes me sad) but do not yell at someone for supplementing if they have to. Loving your blog!

  5. This actually made me tear up a little! Thank you!

    Hugs hugs hugs!